Best Areas to Live in Edinburgh for Families


Residential properties overlooking Portobello Beach in Edinburgh, Scotland

Doing it for the kids: The Best Places in Edinburgh to Raise a Family

If you’ve already got children and looking for more space, or thinking about starting a family and just doing some research, these are our top areas for families to live in Edinburgh;

  • Morningside
  • Stockbridge
  • Corstorphine
  • Cramond
  • Colinton

Edinburgh at a Glance

Number of Outstanding Schools (Ofsted) – 29

Nearby Parks – 129

Burglar Hotspot (Number of claims per 1000 Reports) – 18

Average Salary – £24,628

Job Opportunities (Indeed) – 7,512

Average House Price – £268,670

Voted Second best Place to Live in The UK (The Scotsman)

What Makes Edinburgh a Good Area for Families to Live in?

When deciding the best places for families to live in Edinburgh we looked at a number of key factors when it comes to deciding on the place to call home. What we looked at;


One of the most important deciding factors for families in search of their next home is what schools are in the local area. Edinburgh has a number of exceptional state schools, and the city also has several independent primaries and secondaries. The level of exceptional education on offer makes Edinburgh one of the best cities in the UK to start a family.

Properties in areas of Edinburgh with the best state schools often sell at a premium, and some families may have to compromise on the type of house they move into.

Families that decide on an independent school have more freedom to look outwith the school’s immediate area. It’s worth investigating travel times and school bus routes to make that morning school run as easy as possible.

Local Amenities

Having a selection of local amenities close by is important for families. If you can have vast array of local amenities a stone through away from your home you’ll never have to go far to get what you need.

Consider if you are in walking distance of bus or tram routes. If health and fitness is important to you are there any gyms or health clubs nearby? How close is the nearest supermarket or post office? Once the time comes is there a choice of nurseries?  

Parking & Access

For a young family making your life as easy as possible is always front of mind. Ground floor main door access becomes important when you’re trying to get your shopping, buggy and baby all in the door. Having a place to store your buggy could be a good idea; whether it’s a wide hall, a garage or a cellar close to the front door.

Main door tenement flats are generally smaller as floor space is lost to the communal areas. You might think one positive to come from this is a lower price? However you may end up paying more for a main door flat in Edinburgh, especially if it has direct garden access.

Property Value

At Cox & Co we are firm believers that every property you buy should be an investment. When deciding on the best place to live in Edinburgh as a family it is important to look at what your home could be worth in the future if you decide to sell. Or better yet what rental yield you can expect to make as you grow your property portfolio.

Things to Do

Spending time with your family should be full of fun memories. Finding something to do at the weekend for you and the kids can be difficult. By living in an area of Edinburgh with lots going on and a real sense of community can go a long way to making your life easier.    

For each factor we will score each area of Edinburgh out of ten then total the score of that particular area. This should help you decide the best area of Edinburgh to live in for your family.  

Best Places to Live in Edinburgh with a Family 2018

Lets look at the best places to live in Edinburgh with a family in 2018 in a little more detail.


Morningside has been a stalwart in every list of Edinburgh’s “top areas to live” for as long as I can remember. Although officially a suburb of Edinburgh, and only a twenty minute walk from the city centre, Morningside somehow manages to pull off the feeling of being an idyllic, bustling little village in the middle of the countryside.

With dozens of artisan shops, cafes and quirky eateries, you could literally spend a full weekend walking along Morningside Road sampling their delights. The architecture in the area is also stunning, with imposing Georgian houses mixed with Victorian tenements, offering roomy and elegant housing to the local population.

The schooling is also a huge draw, with South Morningside Primary and Borougmuir High School being two of the most sought after (non-private) schools in Edinburgh, and private schools like George Watsons, catering for all
your educational needs.


Stockbridge is a haven for trendy parents who still want to enjoy the city life with the bonus of family friendly parks, restaurants and sports facilities on their doorsteps. A bit like its friendly competitor, Morningside, Stockbridge offers its own village feel, with the quirky shops on St Stephens Street, to the chic bars and eateries on Raeburn Place, to the local rugby and cricket clubs.

The area benefits from a number of parks and walks, like the Water of Leith, giving families a lot of greenspace to
enjoy and have fun in. The schooling on both public and private levels is great and the abundance of local sports facilities make Stockbridge a great all-round area to live and raise a family.


Situated in the West of the city, Corstorphine offers a more relaxed lifestyle but still with direct and easy access into the city. With the majority of the housing and street layouts being modern, Corstorphine is sometimes seen as the real “suburbs” of Edinburgh and mainly for those who maybe value space and quietness over the amenities of the city centre.

This being said, Corstorphine certainly does not lack in things to do, with attractions like Edinburgh Zoo and Murrayfield Stadium right on the doorstep, and many shops, leisure parks and restaurants along the stretch of St Johns Road.

Add into the mix the good local schooling, sports facilities and easy access to the M8 motorway and Edinburgh airport, Corstorphine will always draw families into the area.


As an elderly client of mine who had lived in Cramond his whole adult life once said to me “Life by the sea is the only life for me”. And I am sure a lot of Cramond residents would agree, like the famous author J.K. Rowling who also calls this quaint area home.

The area is beautiful, with many stately looking houses and no doubt wealthy occupants, giving the place a very exclusive feel. The close proximity to the beach makes it even more inviting, and the historic Cammo Park offers a real hidden treat to the locals and visitors alike.

There is a good selection of schools, a beach, multiple parks and walks, a number of cosy pubs and great access to all transport links, what more could you ask for?


Another exclusive locale of Edinburgh, Colinton is home to some rather large and extravagant homes, taking advantage of the abundance of greenery in the area. The small main street has selection of shops, restaurants and cafes, also with a pub or two, so you do not have to venture into the city for a pint of milk, or indeed a pint of lager.

The draw of this area is probably down to the ease into and more importantly, out of Edinburgh. The Pentland Hills are but a ten minute drive away and the Water of Leith waterway offers a walking and cycle path all the way to Balerno.

There are good local schools, including the highly prestigious Merchiston Castle, an abundance of parks and outdoor space, so maybe a great home for the more active family.

Best Places to Live in Edinburgh with Kids 2018

We hope you have enjoyed our guide to the best places to live in Edinburgh for families. If you need any help in sourcing your next family home please reach out to the team today.

Cox & Co are your local Edinburgh property experts.

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